Under the current scenario of rapid human population growth, achieving efficient and productive land use for food production while conserving biodiversity is a global challenge. Surely, Indonesia is also facing and should overcome this challenge.
At present, Indonesia is no longer self-sufficient in rice and highly dependent on import for other food commodities. Consequently, Government of Indonesia is pushing extra hard to increase food production, especially for rice. If it is not wisely planned and carefully executed, this effort might be achieved at expense of severe decline in biodiversity. It should also be noted that the one who will execute food production activities in the fields are our farmers. Majority of Indonesian farmers are poor and not adequately educated. Therefore, efforts to increase productivity may unintentionally create threat to local biodiversity.
Local government should also be directly and actively involved in monitoring food production activities; educating and guiding farmers during this process to minimize negative impacts to environment, including probable impact on biodiversity. It becomes clear that effort to balance between increasing food production and biodiversity protection cannot be downgraded only to technical aspects; government’s roles and farmer’s socio-economical capacity have to also be considered.
This paper will cover issues on urgency for increasing food production, responsibility for maintaining biodiversity, and other considerations associated with social capital and technology contribution.
Full paper can be downloaded here